Campaign tracking links- every marketer’s dream?

This blog was posted by Dawn James on October 24, 2014 as part of the CultureHive Digital Marketing Academy. You can find out more about the project here.

fellow_dawnjamesWe recently had a meeting with our mentor Daniel Rowles and had a good old troubleshooting session on Google Analytics. Holly and I came prepped with our list of woes which were soon answered- it felt very good to get those problems firmly ticked off the list! I think we now have a better understanding of some of the tools we are supposed to be using, like goals, funnels and segments.

One of the problems we were facing was not being able to see the referral traffic of our paid advertising campaigns on youtube and facebook in Google Analytics. Daniel helped us solve this by introducing us to the world of Google campaign tracking links.

It’s dead simple actually- you just pop your URL in Google’s URL builder ( fill out the criteria and voila- a new link is created that can easily be inserted into your campaigns on social media, web or email and then tracked in your acquisition/ campaigns function in Google Analytics.

After our meeting with Daniel last week we built a number of adverts for our latest production, The House That Will Not Stand, on facebook and youtube and instead of using our standard Tricycle URL’s, we created bespoke Google tracking links for these. We also did the same thing for some targeted email marketing activity.

I’ve checked in to analytics a week later and successfully managed to find the area of analytics (acquisition/ campaigns) where the data from these links is stored. I was really happy to see the links are there and actually working! So we now have a much more accurate account of who is visiting us from youtube and facebook, and we can also compare this to a couple of goals we have in play at the moment: a destination goal geared towards young people and a duration goal for a dwell time of longer than 3 minutes.

So just to share a couple of brief insights, I can see that there was an 8% conversion rate on our duration goal of people coming from facebook, and a 20% conversion rate for a recent email campaign we sent. So people receiving emails are sticking around for longer than people coming from facebook. There is a 0% conversion rate on this for youtube- which is something we will keep a close eye on as we increase our spend on this platform.

This is really helpful because for an organisation with limited budgets it does enable us to see what activity is being successful and what isn’t. It also helps us to look into how effective each marketing platform is and specifically every individual campaign.

I have to say I felt very enthused after our meeting with Daniel last week and am quite happy to be sharing some tentative results of our work here, in what feels like such a short space of time. Also today we were able to bring some of the results of our campaign tracking into the regular marketing weekly meeting. It was great to be able to be sharing our findings with the rest of the team, even if we still have a bit more work to do drilling down the results!

Dawn and Holly x

1 Comment

  1. Daniel Daines-Hutt

    Hey Dawn,

    Just interested to see any updates after setting up your conversion channels to track your campaigns?

    We find a lot of businesses sometimes struggle with DM campaigns, simply due to tracking the results

    They could be awesome but if you dont know either way it can be hard to keep motivated with it!

    Did the youtube links pick up?
    It may be the content or simply the current viewer base you have doesnt fit perfectly-i wouldnt give up on video marketing however!
    Are you hosting the content to other video channels?
    Vimeo might work well for you?

    You could also look at building out playlists, custom video suggestions at the end and adding similar keywords to each video (branded)
    This way, you can dodge the core flaw in youtube where the viewers get caught with something else afterwards and forget their initial reason for watching!

    Keep us informed Dawn!


    (A different one!)

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